Tools & Tips

Book Recommendations

This is not a mandatory task, however for those of you who want to know some good resources prior to or during your time in the ED the following may be useful. I have listed some books I have found useful for both my clinical work and my membership exams, however as you go through the teaching programs in the department the list of resources will expand to include podcasts and other media.

If anybody has any other book recommendations or is considering MCEM and would like further advice please post in the forum on the main page.

The Oxford Handbook of Emergency Medicine: (ISBN: 0199589569)

The goto book for advice on the fly, it attempts to summarise one of the most diverse fields of medicine in one book, it will often contain enough detail to answer a question on ED management but may lack depth if you want deeper details.

Emergency Care of Minor Trauma in Children: (ISBN: 144412014X)

Not only is this written by one of the consultants in our department, it is a very useful guide to the assessment and management of minor injuries. It is obviously particularly relevant in paediatric ED, and contains top tips and warnings of things not to miss.

ABC of Eyes: (ISBN: 0727916599)

Opthalmology is not always taught well at medical school and your experience may be limited, however patients with eye problems will often present to the ED out of hours so knowing where to get some more information is vital.

ECG's For the Emergency Physician 1: (ISBN: 0727916548)

ECGs are a common enough investgation, but can be tricky to interperet in the busy ED with lots of external pressures and distractions. There is specific departmental teaching on ECG and a quiz to carry out before you can sign of ECGs in the department. For those who want a refresher this is a good place to start.

Accident and Emergency Radiology A Survival Guide: (ISBN: 0702026670)

By the end of your time in the ED you will have looked at a large number of radiographs, however as you start in the ED you may not feel comfortable interpreting certain types of imaging (particularly MSK films). Having a good book to refer to can be vital and this is the book I have used. The teaching program in the ED will also highlight some useful websites and other resources.

App Recommendations

Many of our staff have consulted on a number of medical apps. Here is a current list of recommendations for new starters in Emergency Medicine:


POPS Score

The Paediatric Observation Priority Score (POPS) is a tool to aid decision making in urgent and emergency care. It combines objective, subjective and observational features to create a score 0-16 that can be ascribed to children and young people presenting to Emergency Departments, Urgent Care Centres and Primary Care Clinics (Family Doctor).

It is undergoing continuous validation (more information is available here) and we welcome feedback on its use, especially in environments outside the Emergency Department.


Online Recommendations


The Ten Commandments of Emergency Medicine

This slightly humorous blog entry makes ten rather important points for working in the ED. It is written by an American and based of journal article from 1991, however I find it hard to disagree with the points made and certainly by following them you will avoid some common pitfalls.


Preventing Nightmares: A Guide for Medical Students and Residents

One of the hardest parts of EM is the decisions and taking things home with you, there is a lot of truth in this blog and it describes situations eerily similar to ones I have had. It suggests a good way to approach your clinical work and some considerations to make. The ethos of recognising a mistake, learning from it and trying to move on is important. In EM there is always the next patient and the next problem, and hopefully you can take your mistakes and use them to help others.


Note Keeping

This short article from the BMJ covers some important points about note keeping. Good notes in the ED are vital due to the the turnover of patients and that all admitted patients will be handed over to another team. Therefore the next person reading them needs to now what you were worried about/ planning. Not to mention that good note will keep the ED nurses on your side!


Risk Management in the ED

This video covers some of the strategies for management of risk. For optimal viewing watch in fullscreen.

If you want to know more about errors, human factors and the swiss cheese model you can read the following:

Password: em3


Every Minute of Every Day...

Ever wondered what is going on inside other people's heads? Do you think you would act differently if you did?

Watch this video that goes inside the minds of various people in a hospital (both patients and staff). It was produced in the UK by Heatherwood and Wexham Park Hospitals NHS FT.

Without labouring the point it is worth bearing this video in mind when on the shop floor, the Emergency Department can be a very emotionally charged environment and being able to show empathy will help diffuse most situations.


Compassion in Emergency Medicine

This video has been produced by Dr Damian Roland and Dr Pro Mukherjee and it gives an insight into what compassion means in Emergency Medicine.

Inpatient Diabetes Training & Support (logo).png

eHandbook for Inpatient Diabetes Care

This handbook is part of an educational toolkit (ITS – Inpatient Diabetes Training & Support) and is for use as a learning resource. It does NOT replace the essential to role Insulin Safety training on HELM.

Although the handbook was primarily written for junior doctors it is open access and so any member of staff can access. If you use Twitter please also follow: @ITS_diabetes_ for bite-sized educational top tips on inpatient diabetes care. This is another great way of keeping up to date with the key safety messages

More coming soon...